Q & D Responses: Do you host rep presentations?

RepPresentation032417In last week's Quick & Dirty Survey, I asked booksellers if their stores host publisher rep presentations. It was close, but 53% of respondents said NO and 47% of respondents hold some sort of rep presentation. Of the 47% that said yes, 25% indicated that the rep presentations were for customers only, 37% said that they were for buyers only, and the rest indicated that the presentations were for all staff. Here are some of the comments, with all details other than location removed:

Video: Happy Dreamer

Out today, Happy Dreamer from the creator of The Dot and Ish, Peter H. Reynolds. And here's a little trailer to share to remind little ones, graduates, and readers of all ages to dream big. Reynolds is on Facebook, on Twitter @peterhreynolds, and has a great website where he describes his 'campaign' to make the world a more creative place. "The next time you're thinking about what gift to give someone, think of something that will encourage creativity," he writes. "Whether it's a blank journal or book on crafts, a set of watercolors or a guide to making films, a stationery set or a watercolor brush - let it be something that inspires expression. Children and grown up children need to be encouraged to consume less, and create more." Sounds like a great display idea to me. If you'd like to share this video with your customers, here's the embed code:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ts9OfTqF-p4?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

300 Seconds: Here’s the thing about resolutions.

This is an IndieNext reminder. The deadline for books published in June 2017 and beyond is Tuesday, April 4, for books published in June 2017 and beyond... which is why I want to talk about resolutions. What do the months of April and June have to do with resolutions, you ask? I'll answer your question with one of my own: Why do resolutions need to begin in January? Think about it. The first IndieNext nomination deadline of the year was on January 3. Most booksellers were still recovering from the holidays or up to their eyeballs in inventory at that time. So if your resolution was to submit an IndieNext nomination for each month this year, you were setting yourself up for failure before the year even began. But why not just reset? I've been eating clean for almost a year. Well, I've been trying to eat clean for almost a year. If I have a weak moment and eat something I shouldn't, I don't throw up my hands and say, "Well that's over." I just reset at the next meal. Why should resolutions be different? Do you have 'submit to IndieNext monthly' listed among your resolutions? Here's the list of monthly deadlines provided by the ABA. You can print and post it wherever it does the most good, or transfer the deadlines to your personal calendar. And of you need them, here's an online submission form as well as the instructions and guidelines for how to write a nomination. You have a full week before the June nominations are due, and you really only need to find 300 seconds during that time to submit yours. And while you have that resolution list handy, take another look. What else would you like to begin again? You're allowed more than a few mulligans.

300 Seconds: Mysterious Friends

Have you performed a self-check on your store lately? If you have just 5 minutes to devote to marketing today--and if you have three friends--reach out to them and ask for some help with a little market research. (Maybe you can use a store gift card as an incentive.)
  1. Ask the first friend to call the bookstore for specifics about an upcoming event.
  2. Ask the second friend to call in search of an obscure title.
  3. Ask the third friend to call with a complaint about a product or service.
Then ask each caller to report back on the following:
  • How many times did the phone ring?
  • Did the employee have a pleasant demeanor?
  • Was the employee helpful?
  • Did they respond to your questions in a knowledgeable manner?
  • Did they empathize with you?
  • Did they have the authority to solve your problem, quickly and to your satisfaction?
Use the results from this research to determine any gaps you might have in employee training and if there are any skills lacking that will aid employees in serving your customers. And remember that even though we don't want to find areas that need attention, it's better than being oblivious to them.

Video: Le Balthazar Cocktail

I know it's only Monday, but... In this video, learn to make Le Balthazar, the signature cocktail developed in honor of Reggie Nadelson's new book, At Balthazar (Gallery Books | April 4, 2017). Touted as strong, tart, but not overpowering, if it's half as tasty as this video is visually appealing, be prepared for another round. If you'd like to share the video, here's the embed code:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/5gGdD7KhJ6w?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>